Northern Cardinal, 4

photograph of a male Northern Cardinal

Virginia’s state bird can be difficult to photograph. The Northern Cardinal normally keeps at a safe distance from people so it’s hard to get really close to them.  The male’s brilliant red color can also make exposure and even focus difficult at times.  I captured this one in open shade and that seems to have resolved the color issues.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Vivid

Traditions De France

photograph of Traditions De France store in Old Town Alexandria, VA

During the walking part of my commute through Old Town Alexandria I kept my eyes open for vivid images.  Normally I walk on the same side of the street as Traditions De France so I pass right by without really seeing it.  Viewed from across the street it really does make for a vivid image.

Red Bellied Woodpecker

Photograph of a Red Bellied Woodpecker in a tree

People often assume this bird is a Red Headed Woodpecker.  The confusion is understandable as the Red Bellied Woodpecker’s head is red on the top and back.  By comparison the Red Headed Woodpecker’s head is red on the top, back, sides, and front.  If you happen to catch a glimpse of this bird’s stomach you’ll see the red patch for which it is named.

Aphid Nightmare

photograph of a ladybird beetle feeding on aphids

This family of aphids watches helplessly as one of their clan is ruthlessly devoured by their arch enemy, the ladybird beetle (aka ladybug).  When you look at a ladybug it’s easy to forget they are savage predators.